Boks ‘let the country down’

Boks ‘let the country down’

South Africans and rugby fans around the world are shocked at the Springboks’ unexpected loss against Japan.

 

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Japan’s Karne Hesketh placing the ball over the chalk line for the winning try against the Springboks Saturday night. Photo: Charlie Crowhurst

South Africa’s  two time Rugby World Cup winning Springboks took on the underdog team of Japan on Saturday and lost.

Before the start of the first of the Pool B matches everyone knew this game would be historical as it was the first time these two sides met. To the surprise of rugby fanatics around the world, including that of Japan, the Asian side pulled well-deserved 32-34 win out of the bag in extra time.

“We let the country down, we let ourselves down…no excuses,” said Springbok head coach Heyneke Meyer.

Before the game Japan only won one out of their 24 matches in their RWC bids, whereas South Africa only lost four out of their 25 games.

From the kick-off Japan was on the Boks with every move they made putting pressure with their ability to get to the break-down faster than the green and gold.

They played tactically well and made good use of every opportunity the Boks gave them with penalties.

Although the Japanese displayed incredible rugby, one might say the Springboks’ starting XV were definitely not of the caliber that the world is use to.

Meyer chose to play heavy and slow players expecting Japan would be a walk-over win of at least 40 points, but he played right into Japan’s coach, Eddie Jones’ hands.

Springbok captain, Jean de Villiers was at a loss for words after the games, but commended the Japanese side for a fantastic game.

Never before has a team conceded this many points against South Africa in a RWC match.

Unless South Africa wins the rest of their pool games with two bonus points the Boks will be going home much sooner than expected.

They will be taking on an even tougher opposition in the form of Samoa next Saturday. If they lose this game their campaign for the cup is over.

SOCCER: Big win for Wits in women’s football league

The Wits Football Women’s team showed a resurgence in form in their match against Tshwane University of Technology-1 on Wednesday night. Playing on home soil, the team managed to net 5 goals, producing their best performance this season.

Both teams came into this game on equal footing on the league log. TUT-1 had played to a two-all draw with Vaal University of Technology (Vanderbijlpark) two weeks ago while Wits played to a one-all draw with the University of Johannesburg (UJ).

The team played defensively against UJ but showed confidence in their match on Wednesday, pushing forward with every possession of the ball. Linah Maphanga and Siphesihle Zungu made a strong partnership by ensuring that with every touch of the ball they had, an opportunity to score.

“This result shows that we are getting better game-by game”.

When speaking to Wits Vuvuzela last week, Zungu shared how nervous she had been during the last match because she is one of the new players on the team. It seems she has warmed up to the task and this showed in her performance last night.

Wits coach Jabulile Baloyi explained the game had given the team a more positive outlook for the rest of the season. She said “Even though we were satisfied with the draw, this result shows that we are getting better game-by game”.

With Wednesday night’s win, the go into their next match again Midrand Graduate Institute (MGI), their first away game, looking to move to the top of the table. “We’re going back to the drawing board in terms of looking at where our weaknesses were because we didn’t play that perfectly we sure need to work on some departments,” Baloyi said.

The goals of the evening were scored by Maphanga who scored the first two goals, Hlengiwe Tshirunga who scored another two goals and Zungu who scored the final goal of the night against TUT-1 women.